Foreground is a new company formed by the combination of Shootproof, the pro photography productivity solution, and Collage, the photo-printing and gifting site. According to the press release, the Foreground “enters into the nearly $4 billion consumer and professional photography industry, as an exciting new player that brings together industry veterans and technology leaders in the ‘age of the creator.'”
Foreground is backed by Providence Strategic Growth, the growth equity firm focusing on middle-market software and technology-enabled service companies. Vista Point Advisors, a San Francisco-based boutique investment bank, acted as the financial advisor to Michigan-based Collage.com. Details of the acquisition of Collage.com were not disclosed. Foreground will also continue the suite of brands previously acquired by Shootproof: photo studio management provider Táve, custom photo product provider Design Aglow, and Cole’s Classroom.
“Foreground harnesses the evolution of the category, marrying the business needs of the professional photographer with current and large-scale knowledge of consumer behavior,” said Stephen Marshall, CEO, Foreground. “We can leverage our understanding of consumers on the Collage side to help photographers become more efficient and profitable while fostering lifelong client relationships, from shoot to print and beyond.”
“This fits our vision of an ideal photo experience,” added Kevin Borders, co-founder of Collage. “We are excited to help photographers and consumers create lasting memories with unprecedented ease and delight.”
In the press release, ShootProof and Collage were said to “together generate over 40 million site visits per year, and both entities have yielded significant market research on photographers and photo consumers.” The connection between the two entities will help photographers market printed products directly, as opposed to having their professional photos printed elsewhere.
“Our professional photographer network represents hundreds of thousands of small businesses, the large majority of which are women-owned and operated,” added Marshall. “We are enabling the discovery of these small businesses by consumers, helping them grow and scale their photography business into a rewarding livelihood.”
Company executives also said the new entity will help consumers who want to easily make physical products from professional photos.
“We are generating an unprecedented amount of images, photos, and pictures but we need to consider how that’s being shared for generations. Current siloed systems are enabling the virtual equivalent of that dusty shoebox of photos in the attic,” added Marshall. “The pandemic year taught us the importance of ‘the moment’ and the desire for creative expression. Pun intended; we need to keep those values in the foreground.”